Eighth Graders Use Modern Tools to Learn About Ancient History
Eighth grade students are trading in their smartphones and emojis for clay tablets and Cuneiform — for now... 😉
As part of their unit on the ancient civilizations of Southwest Asia, Ms. Shrier’s class took an in depth look at the geography, natural resources, innovations, language and ways of life of the Sumerians of Mesopotamia. After studying what constitutes a civilization and what differentiates it from an agricultural society, students began looking at Cuneiform — the first form of writing in history invented by the Sumerians — and the clay tablets used to write on, as it was a plentiful resource in Mesopotamia.
The students created their own terra cotta clay tablets and inscribed their identity and ancestry on them: “I am (name) the son/daughter of (name).” They also created unique signatures with cylinder seals.
Students were also challenged to create the most accurate, realistic replica possible of a ziggurat — an ancient Mesopotamian temple and city hall — using the materials of their choosing. One group asked to 3D print it their ziggurat, found a template and printed in the High School STEM Center — applying cutting-edge technology to ancient history.